Keeping an Eye on Aging

I think we can all relate. The first thing that starts to age with our eyes is blurred vision, and off we go to the ophthalmologist. Once we get the vision problem corrected, reality becomes clear: the sagging eyelid, the under-eye puffiness, the loss of collagen on the inner corners causing dark shadows. Take a deep breath for a moment, and don’t call your ophthalmologist in a panic thinking you have the wrong strength prescription for your new glasses or contact lenses. This is the time to do your homework on a board-certified plastic surgeon and find the least invasive technique to help smooth out the fine details you are seeing.

Obviously, every patient has different needs. For me, I was dealing with under-eye puffiness and crepey skin that I could not correct with expensive creams or make-up concealers. In fact, make-up only made it worse. I found myself being overly aware of the “tired” look I had when traveling, even though I had gotten a good night’s rest. The mirrored elevator rides in the morning became an eye-opening experience, and the “smooth tool” became my favorite friend. I reached out to a trusted local plastic surgeon, Dr. Shawn Birchenough, and booked a consultation. I was super clear that I did not want to risk anything to change the shape of my eyes. I inherited my grandmother’s “cat eye” and my mother’s high eyebrow, which works to my advantage. We have all seen photos of celebrities who have had their eyes done and look totally different afterward because of a subtle reshaping.

Dr. Birchenough made a few suggestions, and we decided to do an under-eye laser treatment with the use of minimal fillers and botox. I personally prefer a more conservative approach, but as I stated earlier, each person’s needs will vary. The whole process lasted less than 30 minutes with very little discomfort. The laser feels like a hot zap that dissipates very quickly. You need to allow yourself two or three days at home, or you can wear dark sunglasses if you need to go out into public or the sun. I had some swelling and bruising with very little discomfort. The use of a safe eye cream with SPF is highly recommended to keep any further skin damage in the future. After my laser treatment, I don’t need a concealer any more and find that a tinted moisturizer with SPF 45 is all I need. As we age, keeping makeup light is the key to a fresh face.

An overnight flight to Europe with a six-hour time change, only to wake up looking refreshed on day one of my holiday, was my confirmation this procedure was just what the doctor called for.


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